backtop


Print 30 comment(s) - last by gt1911.. on Jun 11 at 10:44 PM


Chronix's serum DNA blood tests may be the newest way to detect breast and prostate cancer.  (Source: HowStuffWorks)
Report shows that Chronix's serum DNA assays head a new approach in diagnostics of cancer

Chronix Biomedical presented their study results at the 2010 ASCO Annual Meeting in Chicago, regarding its serum DNA blood tests. The DNA assays may be the newest diagnostic and prognostic approach in detecting breast and prostate cancer. The high numbers for sensitivity and specificity significantly outperformed the published accuracy data for current methods. 

By employing proprietary algorithms, developed by Chronix researchers, tests can detect and analyze, as well as identify cancer-related bits of DNA that are released by apoptotic cells into the bloodstream. However, only a few regions consistently show apoptotic DNA in the serum. These regions, named 'hotspots,' are specific to the type of cancer – only 29 breast cancer 'hotspots' and 32 prostate cancer 'hotspots' to be exact. 

"By focusing on these blood-born genomic 'hotspots,' we can reliably detect the presence of cancer without having to first isolate or analyze tumor cells," said Howard Urnovits, Ph.D., co-author of the study, and Chief Executive Officer of Chronix. He continued by explaining that Chronix tests for cancers would allow doctors to diagnose cancer at its earliest stages, allowing for greater care and optimize treatment using patients' disease-specific genomic fingerprints. 

The study involved 575 individuals: 200 healthy patients, 178 with early stage breast cancer, and 197 with invasive prostate cancer were employed. Chronix assays detected the breast cancer with a 100% specificity and 92% sensitivity, and prostate cancer with the same 100% specificity and 92% sensitivity. Current practices result in comparatively lower numbers, however, they cannot be directly compared. 

Mammograms have an overall sensitivity of 75% and specificity of 92.3%, as found by a large study of U.S. mammography screenings.The PSA (prostate specific antigen) test, currently used to detect prostate cancer, has an overall 85% sensitivity and 25-35% specificity. The future use of Chronix to detect cancer may reduce the current rate of false negative and false positive results, leading to an improvement in all areas of health care, ranging from patient outcomes to health care costs.

"These new data, although early, provide further evidence that Chronix's proprietary serum DNA assays may represent a new diagnostic and prognostic platform that can identify cancer earlier and more accurately than is currently possible," states breast cancer expert Steven Narod, M.D., F.R.C.P.C. 

This is not the first time Chronix released studies concerning new diagnostic approaches to diseases. Previous studies showed that the Chronix approach can identify the presence/absence of active disease in multiple sclerosis patients, as well as the detection of BSE, or mad cow disease, in veterinary applications.

Many look to these encouraging findings to service clinical researchers, as well as cancer patients. The future use of Chronix assays may in fact increase the survival rate among patients. 



Comments     Threshold


This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

An explanation would be appreciated
By gt1911 on 6/8/2010 3:45:23 AM , Rating: 2
Can someone give me a simple explanation of what the terms 'specificity' and 'sensitivity' mean in the context of medical research?

It seems like really good news, but I don't have a research background and I'd like to understand more.

Thanks in advance for your help.




By FoundationII on 6/8/2010 8:05:18 AM , Rating: 2
Specificity is the proportion of people who tested negative (for cancer in this case) out of the total amount of negative people. So false positives reduce specificity.
Sensitivity is the proportion of people who tested positive out of the total amount of positive people. So false negatives reduce sensitivity.


RE: An explanation would be appreciated
By protosv on 6/8/2010 9:57:39 AM , Rating: 3
Basically a simplification would be:

Sensitivity: A measure of how easily a test is able to detect the disease. For example, if you have 100 men with known prostate cancer and you screen them with this test, and it picks up 92/100 men as positive, then the sensitivity is 92%.

Specificity: A measure of how often a positive test result actually indicates that you have the disease. For example, take those 92 men who came up with a positive test screen. If 92/92 men who came up positive actually have prostate cancer then the specificity is 100%. If, for example, only 80/92 men who came up positive on the test actually have prostate cancer, then the specificity would be 80/92 = 87%


By gt1911 on 6/11/2010 10:44:45 PM , Rating: 2
Thanks for that. I think I get it now.


"A lot of people pay zero for the cellphone ... That's what it's worth." -- Apple Chief Operating Officer Timothy Cook














botimage
Copyright 2014 DailyTech LLC. - RSS Feed | Advertise | About Us | Ethics | FAQ | Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information | Kristopher Kubicki